Tuesday, August 23, 2011

“Islam Has Never Grown Up”

Our Norwegian correspondent The Observer sends his translation of a surprising op-ed from Dagbladet.

Ole Martin Moen says things in this piece that one would not normally expect to see in the Norwegian media. In fact, don’t his words prove that he is an “Islamophobe”, just like — gulp! — Anders Behring Breivik?

From Norway, of all places, a remarkably sane opinion column:

Go ahead, insult

We need to stop the preferential treatment of Islam

by Ole Martin Moen

Criticism of Religion: When the pope visited the UK last year, thousands of protesters gathered in the streets to express their opinion of the Catholic Church: That it acts as brake on enlightened ideas and equality, and that it isn’t welcome in modern day Britain. The slogans were numerous. ‘Nope Pope!’ and ‘Go Home Pope!’

Most people believe that a big and authoritarian religion like Catholicism needs to be able to tolerate such protests. But ask yourself: How would a similar protest against Islam be dealt with? Quite differently. Slogans like ‘No to Imams!’ and ‘Imams go home!’ are hardly ever heard. No one would say that Islam isn’t welcome in a modern European nation. Geert Wilders had to stand trial for expressing similar thoughts.

Does Islam deserve a softer treatment than Catholicism? Hardly. Islam is the bigger religion of the two, and it has more political power. Islam is also the most oppressive. While Catholicism discriminates between men and women in matters relating to the church, Islam also discriminates in these matters in civil society. If a scantily dressed woman enters St. Peter’s Cathedral, she will be asked to cover more of her body. If she enters Mecca she will be jailed. In most Catholic nations gays can get married; in most Muslim nations they’re persecuted.

Catholic countries have freedom of expression, something that hardly any Muslim country has. Compared with Islam modern Catholicism is almost like Sunday school [Norwegian word for kids’ bible study classes].

I’m stressing the word ‘modern’, because of course both Catholicism and Christianity have dark histories. But Christianity has for almost 500 years been exposed to massive criticism. Christians have been told time and again how primitive it is to believe that a Jewish cult leader from 2,000 years in the past was God’s son. They have been put in their place, and they have matured and become sufficiently thick-skinned to stomach such criticism.

Islam has never been exposed to such criticism, but has instead been protected. Because of this Islam has never grown up. Instead Islam has been treated like a spoiled kid who throws a tantrum whenever someone says something unpleasant.

If Islam is going to grow up, rather than remaining an unbearable bully indefinitely, we have to stop protecting it and stop giving it preferential treatment. We have to be brave enough to treat it just as harshly as Christianity was with Øverland [A Norwegian author who was charged with blasphemy in 1933], and say that Islam is a backwards and dogmatic religion. We need to be brave enough to say that ‘Muslims are wrong’ just as easily as we say that ‘liberals are wrong’. We need to draw caricatures of Muhammad just like we draw caricatures of Jesus. We need to treat Kurt Westergaard like we treat Monty Python. We can’t demonize Geert Wilders’ Islam critique anymore than we demonize Anonymous’ scientology criticism.

Perhaps this will cause offense among some. That will only confirm that the criticism was necessary. Religions need to be insulted until they reach an insult-saturation point. Only when they’ve reached this point will they be able to tolerate criticism without screaming, hyperventilating and behave like spoiled children.


Cyril Lucar said...

Of course, it is very doubtful that Islam will ever grow up in such a way. Islam is, at it's core, a religion of protecting one's honor. Muhammed do this over and over again, and was quite willing to have even nursing mothers killed for mocking him. While Christianity has always struggled with this, the truth is that, at it's core, it is an honor relinquishing faith. This was counter cultural for the first century and still is. Jesus' followers didn't go out and kill anyone for murdering Jesus. Turn the other cheek is the classic call to reject honor. Islam can only mature and accept criticism when it quits being Islam.

Jedilson Bonfim said...

This subject always makes me think where that "everyone is born a muslim" nonsense comes from, and I've come to the conclusion that it is from the fact that, at birth, I suppose we all share the same kind of emotional maturity. The overwhelming majority of infidels, however, obviously don't remain as emotionally mature as newborns for the rest of their lives. But that's really all there is to that mohammedan maxim, since no one on this planet is born with the ability to take the delight in acts of cruelty, brutality and sadism that muslims acquire from a very early age, and which actually defines what a true muslim is more than anything else, as far as their actions are concerned. And, when we consider the fact that islam replaces the innocence and inherent goodness of babies and toddlers with blind hatred and evil, that in itself is yet another reason why the fight to protect civilization from 7th-Century bedouin nazism ought to never be given up.

OffendedMan said...

It will be interesting to track the response to this editorial - I suspect the author will be subjected to extreme presure to "recant" his heretical views.

urah2222 said...

More or less

Christianity is about Mistletoe.
Islam is about TOW Missiles.

Dr. Shalit

goethechosemercy said...

Most people believe that a big and authoritarian religion like Catholicism needs to be able to tolerate such protests. But ask yourself: How would a similar protest against Islam be dealt with? Quite differently.

I have a question for the British commenters here.
Why is it that 20th Century Englishmen could not deal with Islam as they dealt with Catholicism in the 16th Century?
The way I see it, the threat to the British nation from Rome was NOTHING compared with the recent threat from Islam.
Even last year, Brits were happy to protest against Roman domination of their religion (imaginary) and to be perfectly silent at the Arabo-Pagan domination of their religious/cultural/political/economic life by Islam!
One would think that they were using a little DISPLACEMENT there!

Loren said...

Why do we refer to Islam as a religion? What makes it different from other totalitarian apparatuses, like the mafia or nazism?

Anonymous said...

Christianity doesn't have a particularly dark history mister Sennels, I'd like to point out: humanity has. The fact that our history has gotten a little brighter has much to do with the tenets of christianity..we couldn't have done it without the church and the bible. Our history is mainly dark in spite of our religion, not because of it.

rui said...

hey, I say that this (http://musulmanbook.blogspot.com/) is the book every modern jorno should read to learn everything he needs to know about islam.

Franklin said...

Like a child who has never advanced beyond it's seventh year...how can one expect islam to "grow up", when it's geopolitical philosophy will not assimilate into the 21st century? The only option is to fight it not feed it and simply watch it eventually die.